£400m funding boost for electric car charging

The Canary

A £400 million fund to boost electric vehicle charging infrastructure has been launched, the Treasury said.

The first £70 million will be allocated for 3,000 charge points, more than doubling the number across the UK to 5,000.

The scheme is being funded equally by taxpayers and private investors.

It forms part of the Government’s ambition to end the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “It’s fantastic there is already a rapid charge point at almost every motorway service station, and now more charging stations than petrol stations.

“But I want to see thousands more charge points installed across the UK.

“This fund will help drum up further investment in charging infrastructure from the private sector, so charging an electric car becomes as easy as plugging in a smartphone.”

AA president Edmund King acknowledged that “good progress” is being made on the road to electrification but warned there is still “a long journey ahead”.

He added: “This £400 million investment in rapid chargers will help but we need a good supply of affordable new and used electric vehicles to convince more consumers to plug in rather than continue going to the pumps.”

Data published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders shows 17,393 pure electric new cars were registered during the first eight months of the year, up 93% compared with the same period in 2018.

These cars now hold a 1% share of the new car market.

But industry experts have warned that demand will be limited unless charging infrastructure is significantly improved.

The Treasury also announced a further £143 million for research and development to combat air and water pollution, and boost sustainability.

We need your help ...

The coronavirus pandemic is changing our world, fast. And we will do all we can to keep bringing you news and analysis throughout. But we are worried about maintaining enough income to pay our staff and minimal overheads.

Now, more than ever, we need a vibrant, independent media that holds the government to account and calls it out when it puts vested economic interests above human lives. We need a media that shows solidarity with the people most affected by the crisis – and one that can help to build a world based on collaboration and compassion.

We have been fighting against an establishment that is trying to shut us down. And like most independent media, we don’t have the deep pockets of investors to call on to bail us out.

Can you help by chipping in a few pounds each month?

The Canary Support us
  • Show Comments
    1. If this sort of money was made available for electric bikes, we could probably provide a bike each for half the population! Electric cargo bikes are being used by many firms now, for deliveries. Electric cars are not the answer. They still clog the roads, park on pavements etc. (See ‘Stop a douchebag’ on YouTube – brave people indeed).

    2. After I posted my first comment, it struck me that this is public money being given to provide charging points for private cars. When did the government ever pay to have petrol stations built? I don’t pretend to have a razor-sharp mind, but something does not seem right here.

    Leave a Reply

    Join the conversation

    Please read our comment moderation policy here.